Flesh­ing out the flesh

Central and North Burnett Times - - EASY EATING - with Mag­gie Cooper Con­tact Mag­gie at mag­gies.col­umn@big­pond.com

ILOVE recipes that al­low me to get rid of left­overs and make them taste even bet­ter than they did the first time around. This zesty au­tumn salad is a great way to use up left­over roast chicken or tur­key.

I’m re­ally en­joy­ing tart, fresh pome­gran­ate ar­ils (the red flesh) this year; that re­fresh­ing burst of flavour gives a boost to just about ev­ery­thing you pair them with. I’ve used them on cheese­cakes, as an ac­com­pa­ni­ment to creme brulee, in a sauce to top grilled pork steaks, and they go nicely in this week’s salad.

I’m sur­prised at how many of my friends have never used pome­gran­ate in a recipe; my bestie con­fessed to me a few weeks ago that he’d never been game enough to buy one. He went on to say he’d picked them up and shaken them, but not hear­ing a rat­tle he did not know what to ex­pect.

They’re a bit fid­dly but not dif­fi­cult to use when you know how. I usu­ally cut just through the skin and twist the halves apart. Then it’s easy to gen­tly twist off the pulp in sec­tions and prise the ar­ils from the pith us­ing your fin­ger­tips.

Au­tumn salad

Serves 6

IN­GRE­DI­ENTS: ◗ 1⁄ pome­gran­ate ◗ 6 cups mixed salad 2 greens ◗ 4 cups cubed cooked chicken or tur­key ◗ 2 medium un­peeled pears, cut into wedges ◗ 1 medium ripe av­o­cado, peeled and sliced ◗ 6 tbs white wine vine­gar ◗ 1⁄ 4 cup olive oil ◗ 3 tbs honey ◗ 1 tsp seeded Di­jon mus­tard ◗ salt and pep­per, to taste ◗ 1⁄ cup roasted al­monds or pecans 4 ◗ 1⁄ cup crum­bled blue cheese (op­tional) 4

METHOD: Cut through the skin of the pome­gran­ate and care­fully re­move ar­ils in a bowl of cold wa­ter. Drain and set aside.

Di­vide salad leaves among six plates. Add chicken or tur­key, pears and av­o­cado. In a screw-top jar, com­bine vine­gar, oil, honey and mus­tard, and sea­son to taste with salt and pep­per.

Place lid on jar and shake vig­or­ously. Driz­zle dress­ing over salad and toss to com­bine. Sprin­kle with pome­gran­ate ar­ils, al­monds or pecans, and blue cheese; serve im­me­di­ately.

PHOTO: MAG­GIE COOPER

◗ Get into an au­tumn groove with this de­li­cious healthy salad.

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